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Netherlands By Train

Explore the Netherlands by train with a Eurail pass and travel from easy-going capital Amsterdam to cities covered with history like Utrecht and Maastricht. While in the Netherlands, consider a visit to the Keukenhof flower gardens and the traditional houses of the Zaanse Schans. Spot tulip fields along the way, as the train takes you to every corner of this small, but fascinating country.

 

Train types in the Netherlands

Netherlands map major rail connections

Regional and Intercity trains in the Netherlands

Intercity (IC)

  • Connects major cities such as Amsterdam, Maastricht and Utrecht.

  • No reservation required.

 

Sprinter (RE)

  • Slower than Intercity trains, these trains link regional destinations to larger Dutch cities.

  • No reservation required.

Domestic high-speed trains in the Netherlands

Intercity direct (IC)

  • On this train, formerly known as Fyra, you can ride even faster between Amsterdam Central, Schiphol Airport, Rotterdam Central and Breda.

International high-speed trains in the Netherlands

ICE (ICE)

  • Connects Amsterdam with Frankfurt (Germany).

  • Reservations are optional. It's worth making one if you'll be travelling at a busy period.

 

Intercity Berlin (IC)

  • Reach Berlin from Amsterdam in 6 hours 20 minutes.

  • Reservations are optional only. We recommend reserving when travelling during a busy period.

 

Intercity Brussels (IC)

  • Connects The Hague and Rotterdam with Brussels (Belgium).

  • Reservations are not required.

 

Thalys (THA)

  • For travel between Amsterdam, Brussels (Belgium) and Paris (France).

  • Reservations are compulsory for these trains, which can get fully booked. We recommend making your reservation as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.

 

Popular connections

Here are approximate train times between Holland's most popular cities. These routes can all be taken with Intercity trains and are free for holders of an Eurail Pass valid in the Netherlands.

 

Route Duration

Amsterdam to Groningen

2 hours 10 mins

Amsterdam to Leeuwarden

2 hours 10 mins

Amsterdam to Maastricht

2 hours 30 mins

Amsterdam to Rotterdam

40 minutes

Amsterdam to Schiphol Airport

15 minutes

Amsterdam to The Hague

50 minutes

Amsterdam to Utrecht

27 minutes

You can travel to and from the Netherlands from popular cities in the following European countries:

Route Which train? Duration Reservations
Amsterdam to Berlin (Germany) Intercity Berlin 6 hours 20 mins Optional
Amsterdam to Düsseldorf (Germany) ICE 2 hours 10 mins Optional
Amsterdam to Frankfurt (Germany) ICE 4 hours Optional
Amsterdam to Paris (France) Thalys 3 hours 30 mins Required
Rotterdam to Brussels (Belgium) Intercity Brussels 2 hours 10 mins Not required
The Hague to Brussels (Belgium) Intercity Brussels 2 hours 30 mins Not required

 

Reservations

Domestic trains in the Netherlands do not require a reservation. You can just hop on and off. A supplement is required for the InterCity Direct high-speed train (formerly known as Fyra) between Amsterdam and Rotterdam, but not between Amsterdam and Schiphol Airport. Reservations are compulsory for international night trains and international high-speed trains. Prices for night trains depend on the type of sleeping accommodation you choose.

 

How to make reservations for trains in the Netherlands

You can make reservations for domestic and international high-speed trains and night trains:

  • Through our Reservation Service.

  • At a ticket desk at local train stations.

  • By phone through the NS high-speed call center.
    Phone number: +31 030 2300023
    Opening hours: Monday-Friday 8 a.m. - 9 p.m. (8:00-21:00) and Saturday 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. (10:00-18:00) (local times). When calling, you’ll hear a menu in Dutch. Select extension ‘1’ for services in English and then ‘1’ to book the Thalys or ‘2’ to book other trains. NS International can book trains in various European countries (€12.50 booking fee; 2 reservations per call allowed). You have to pay for reservations made over the phone with a Visa or MasterCard credit card.

 

Through the call center reservations can only be delivered to addresses in the Netherlands. There are no delivery costs. You can also pick up your reservations at a NS International ticket desk or at a self-service machine. Just go to a Dutch train station with a NS International desk with your booking code.

 

Find out more about reservations

 

Get your Pass for the Netherlands

Benelux Pass

 

Discover Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg by rail.

 

Standard prices from $ 103

Global Pass

 

Be free to visit the Netherlands and up to 32 other Eurail countries.


Standard prices from $ 181

 

Pass benefits

    Lounge Amsterdam Centraal
Lounge Amsterdam Centraal

Discounted ferry crossings to Great Britain

Discounted ferry travel is an extra benefit of a Eurail pass valid in the Netherlands on the route:

  • Hoek van Holland – Harwich (Great-Britain)

 

Access to NS International lounges

Eurail pass holders can also access the NS International lounges on the following train stations for free:

  • Amsterdam Centraal

  • Breda

  • Rotterdam Centraal

  • Schiphol


See all Pass benefits in the Netherlands

 

Tips and tricks for the Netherlands

What are the main train stations in the Netherlands?

The Netherland's 3 main hubs have connections to many domestic and international destinations. They are:

  • Amsterdam Central Station

  • Rotterdam Central Station

  • Utrecht Central Station

 

The Netherlands' railway stations are extemely well developed with excellent facilities:

  • Lockers for storing your stuff

  • Cash machines and foreign exchange desks

  • Cafés, restaurants and shops

  • Tourist information offices

  • Elevators, escalators and access for disabled passengers

Dutch Hub stations

The main hub stations in the Netherlands are Amsterdam CentraalRotterdam Centraal and Utrecht Centraal. At these train stations, it's possible to connect to trains to the Netherlands’ main cities and many international destinations.

 

Please note that the Dutch Railways have closed the entry gates to many Dutch stations. To get into the station, look up the square barcode on your Eurail pass cover. Hold the barcode against the scanner next to an entry gate, and the gate will open for you.

 

Bicycles on trains in the Netherlands

One of the best ways to explore the country is by cycling shorter distances while riding the country's efficient trains between towns and cities.

 

Cycling is extemely common in the Netherlands. You can rent bikes from most large train stations.

 

Spelling of names in the Netherlands

You'll usually find the local spelling of Dutch cities on train timetables and at train stations in the Netherlands.

 

Good to know:

  • Centraal Station = Central Station

  • Den Haag = The Hague

  • Hoek van Holland = Hook of Holland

Quick facts

  • Capital: Amsterdam

  • Population: 16.8 million

  • Language: Dutch

  • Currency: Euro (EUR)

  • Dialing code: +31

 

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